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Insurer issues extreme weather warning

“Check you’re covered” urges Insurance business boss

EARBY-based West Craven Insurance Services has this week urged homeowners to check if their insurance policies are up to date following a series of recent extreme weather events.

Heavy rain and high ground water levels have caused major flooding in the Somerset Levels and many other areas have been affected by high winds after a series of winter storms.

Whilst the recent floods have mainly affected the south of the country, several local areas are also considered to be at high risk of flooding, including Barrowford, Earby, and Barnoldswick.

During the heavy rains of summer of 2007, which cost insurance companies over £3 billion, there was flooding in Earby, whilst parts of Barnoldswick flooded in 2009 with parts of Skipton Road flooded on a regular basis. And despite flood defences built in 2005 the National Flood Risk Assessment of 2008 classified areas of Barrowford as at risk of flooding.

With the floods having been followed by winter storms and very high winds, West Craven Insurance Service’s Managing Director Ian Clarkson, is advising that people take time to detail the extent of any damage caused and take pictures to help settle claims quickly during the busy period.

Mr. Clarkson said: “Floods, high winds and heavy rain have been the norm for many parts of the country recently. The fact is: extreme weather events don’t just damage property – they can damage your pocket too! We’ve seen people trying to make claims only to find that their policies don’t cover properties in flood areas or within a certain proximity of a water course. I’d urge everyone to check their property insurance, so they can rest assured that if it comes to the worse they are fully covered. Additionally, it helps to use a locally based broker – they know your area and can offer you better advice as they understand the risks associated with your property. That way, you’ll get a more comprehensive policy, a better price and peace of mind!”

The Association of British Insurers has estimated the extreme weather events of the winter have led to claims over £426 million. The St Jude storm alone caused pay-outs of approximately £130 million.


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